Hello blogger. Its been, what? A year? Closer to two? Sorry, I've been doing things. Important things. Really, I only activate this status report when surgical years come looming. First, let's address the elephant in the room. The fact that I use the term "Surgical Years" in such a nonchalant manner should be concerning. It's not normal. But alas, one person's normal is another person's. . . vacation? I don't know how to finish that sentence. So, I'll just let it hang out there like that.
We are currently in Florida and will be down here for another 3 months (give or take). Let me digress for a second. I'm currently growing my hair out like Rapunzel. I didn't cut it for a really, really long time. (Keep following me here. . . I'll get to a point.) I went to "get a trim" and the hairdresser cut, like 6-8 inches off. I told her that I wanted to grow it out. Obviously, she didn't understand me, right? Well, no. Why grow hair out if it's just going to be gross? To have a beautiful mane, it needed to be cut. I say all that to say this - we are down in Flordia to grow Lydia's leg. We get to the pre-op appointment for one lengthening and the surgeon tells us that he is actually going to cut out 11 millimeters of her tibia. Similarly to the version of Amber sitting in the salon chair, I wanted to say, "Umm, I don't think that you understand that we are here to grow the leg. . . not shorten it." Alas, her ankle is all kinds of wonky too and in order to correct it and move two steps (or 80 millimeters) forward, sometimes you have to take one step (or 11 millimeters) backwards. I could easily look at all of the metaphorical hair on the salon floor and wallow in sadness, or view this is an awesome blessing that my kid's going to have an extra working joint. The Cashes choose the latter.
The surgery sucks. The hospital stay sucks. She needed a blood transfusion, like 3 days post op, which sucks. But I would tell you story after story of how she's shown loving kindness to those around her even though she is in straight up pain. She's met families from Israel, Africa, Poland and Germany; she's learned how to maneuver a wheelchair like Mario Andretti; and she's stared fear/pain/loneliness in the face. She's 4. She (and these other kids) are made of steel.
She misses her friends. She misses her classmates. She misses her teachers. She misses her cousins. She misses her house. She literally thinks that this will never end. That she will never walk again. And that it will hurt forever. But still she persists. I dont know what the #Shepersisted hashtag was all about, because I was dealing with other things. . . but Imma drop it - #Shepersisted.
This update doesn't get pictures. I don't post hospital pictures. But very soon she will start walking. Very soon she will make new friends. Very soon she will discover her "new normal" (as a very dear friend of mine would say). and very soon you will get to see the feat of engineering that is attached to her body (because you can't NOT see it. It's huge. and she's small.)
As always, God shows himself in the pain more clearly than you could ever imagine in the calm.